While lean management’s roots are embedded in manufacturing, its principles can be effectively used in just about every industry focusing on eliminating waste and improving productivity and profit. But the benefits of lean management can also apply to internal processes in a company, such as increasing employee retention.
Pull your financials to see how much time and money is spent on recruiting and training. Now consider that a survey by Bamboohr found 31 percent of new hires quit a job within six months. According to Zen Workplace, it costs upwards of 150 percent of a mid-level employees annual salary to replace them. Going lean can reduce turnover, retain top talent and improve your bottom line. Heres how to get started.
Build a flexible workforce
Optimize your workplace by building flexible structures that can scale up or down as needed. Employees who can jump into various roles, while still remaining productive and engaged, help fill in temporary gaps. Studies have also found that employers reap benefits from allowing employees to work remotely, and employees are happier, more productive and less likely to quit.
Allow team members to come in late, leave early and work from home as needed. Measure their progress with benchmarks by relying on project management apps such as Slack to stay in communication and share files.
Your employees also need flexible tools to succeed. Arm your team with a Samsung Galaxy S7 to share spreadsheets, client videos and high-resolution photos. The phone also comes with 28 hours of talk time and 12 days of standby time.
Having a system in place for easy data accessibility and to preempt a server crash can keep productivity high. With the right protocols and framework in place, employees can run your business from anywhere. The right tools are essential to empower employees to work from anywhere, even during a data crash. Rely on automatic backup storage systems such as Carbonite to safely secure data and restore on the go.
Develop a lean culture
Do your employees understand what your business is doing and the core values it represents? If you hold closed-door meetings, rarely ask for feedback and don’t take the time to define the bigger meaning of your staff’s roles, then they probably aren’t very engaged with their jobs. Open the door for communication in your office and focus on eliminating waste and improving employee satisfaction.
Empower your employees to make autonomous decisions based on the benefit of the client. Ask for feedback on how they perform their roles from which apps they use to which responsibilities they consider a time suck. Regularly poll your staff on how they work best, all within a framework of honoring your clients and fostering your bottom line.
Test and tweak
Intuit recommends not relying on workflow charts and graphs to keep your office running smoothly. Track productivity and collect data to see how it’s actually working. For example, Rescue Time runs in the background of your computer and mobile devices to help your team understand daily productivity. An easy-to-digest chart shows exactly where an employee’s time is spent. Managers are able to see where time is wasted on areas such as email or meetings and make tweaks to eliminate unnecessary tasks.